Monday, February 8, 2016 Black and Chinese heritages celebrated at Carnegie Hall [Wednesday Night by Former Mayor David Dinkins and Pianist Jiaxin Tian]

Newsday: Former New York City Mayor David Dinkins, right, talks to ballet dancer Mikhail Baryshnikov on Feb. 3, 2016, at the DiMenna Center for Classical Music in Manhattan. Dinkins had just finished rehearsing a show that celebrates Black history and Chinese heritage. Photo Credit: Yeong-Ung Yang

Newsday: Ex-Mayor David Dinkins and pianist Jiaxin Tian prepare on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016, at the DiMenna Center for Classical Music for a show to celebrate the Chinese New Year and Black History Month. Photo Credit: Yeong-Ung Yang

By  - Special to Newsday                  

February 7, 2016

Black History Month and Chinese New Year may seem polar opposites, but a fusion of the February celebrations is in the works at Carnegie Hall.

Renowned Chinese pianist Jiaxin Tian and former Mayor David Dinkins will share the stage — and their heritages — on Wednesday night.
“It helps to remind us that our city is not a melting pot but a mosaic,” said Dinkins, echoing his famous 1990s refrain that redefined New York City’s diversity as separate entities that must be respected.

Dinkins, 87, will recite Abraham Lincoln’s most memorable quotations and proclamations about slavery and America’s struggle for equality in honor of Black History Month. The narration will be accompanied by American composer Aaron Copland’s 1942 masterpiece, “A Portrait of Lincoln.”

Dinkins follows a list of famous Americans who have performed narrations to Copland’s piece, including astronaut Neil Armstrong, newsman Walter Cronkite, actress Katharine Hepburn, professional athlete Julius Erving, President Barack Obama and actor James Earl Jones.                     

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